- women will contaminate Food
“In a study done in a random school in rural India, 55 percent of girls surveyed believed they could not cook or enter the kitchen during and 4 days after menstruation or food would sour.” Bringing it back to Nigeria, while growing up, I heard people say whatever food cooked by a woman during her period will not taste good. This is absolutely untrue. You can cook whenever you want, as your blood flow cannot affect your cooking skills.
2. Women Cannot Enter Holy Places
This myth exists in parts of the world ranging from Bali, India and in Nigeria. Women are believed to be “unclean” while menstruating and are not allowed to enter “clean” and holy places like temples and churches. This is a form of gender inequality that limits women from the same human rights like freedom to practice religion that men have access to.
Girls and women menstruating are not unclean. They are normal, natural, and healthy
3. Sanitary Pads need to be kept unseen. It should be kept private and covered in paper while purchasing
One day, a neighbour who became a friend walked into my room. She saw a pack of sanitary pad on my bed stool and immediately became uncomfortable. She said I was not being careful enough or woman enough because my sanitary pads should not be kept in the open. As usual, she couldn’t defend her stance. There is nothing to be ashamed of and For this reason, UNICEF implemented a massive menstrual education program in hopes of increasing access to proper menstrual products and sanitation facilities.
4. Girls having their period should not go near or touch plants because the plants will die if they do so.
This is another ridiculous myth as plants do not discriminate neither is the woman body radiating dangerous chemicals just because she is menstruating. Plants thrive on good care, like all of us, irrespective of who it comes from.
5. A girl should not talk about her periods in public. If she does, she will be shamed publicly.
Oh dear! I remember the first time I shared a piece on Facebook about my butt pain during menstruation. I got messages from people saying I should not be talking about things like that in public space. I simply asked them why, and of course, they couldn’t logically defend their stance.
Do you think twice before you talk about your hair, eyeliner, eyelashes, nail polish? Talking about periods is not different.
The bottom line is period taboos are not only crazy and ridiculous but they are a huge obstacle holding women back in many ways. It’s difficult to believe these myths still exist all over the world today. But they do, and they need to be stopped.
Awareness and education, especially for people in rural and developing countries, is necessary to empower girls and women everywhere.
Also note that taking Care of yourself during menstruation is as important as taking care of your day to day activities.
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